My older daughter and her husband took our dog and three cats in my mini-van across the country. But my younger daughter, who moved to B.C. with me, has a cat that cannot share its bit of the universe with other felines. With people and dogs, it's a big fluffball. In the presence of other cats, it's a ball of fury. And the fourth of my cats is old and creaky, requiring a special segregated diet. So we took those two with us on the plane.
Maybe Air Canada does on-board pets – I don't know, but I like Westjet anyway (smaller planes, very helpful personnel) and I knew you could bring a cat or small dog in the cabin with you. It cost $50 per and the animal had to be in a secure carrier that would fit under the seat, yet allow the pet to stand up. Must be totally contained – not even head to be let out (the rest might follow).
I'm actually a little surprised they let pets in the cabin, given that so many people are allergic. Who knows who might be sitting beside or near you.
Anyway, no prob. Vet gave my daughter a sedative for her cat and it was pretty groggy the whole trip (5 hours in the air, another couple in the car). My cat, very quiet anyway, just got a pad with nursing-mother pheromones.
We flew on an early morning flight (the only direct one) from a small airport (the nation's capital!) with only one other flight leaving at that time, so we weren't too long in the security line. We had to take the cats out and put the carrier through the X-ray and go through the metal detector with the cats and then stuff them back into the carriers.
In the waiting area a few people noticed what we had in our carry-ons. Some smiled, some frowned.
The plane would accept up to four on-board pets. Our flight had three – our two and a woman had a dachshund.
On the plane the steward gave us the required talk: No bit of the cat out – unless there was emergency evacuation, in which case we were to open the carriers and let 'em go. Don't try to take them with us - “They have survival instincts and will get out by themselves.” (Doubtful.)
Then five hours of boring flight, with some spectacular mountain views for the last bit.
I had tried to rent a car from an outfit I'd used before that is off-site and you get to them on a shuttle. They were all booked so I said to hell with it and got Dollar at the airport. My idea was to leave my daughter with our suitcases and the cats to wait for me at the arrivals door and I'd come pick them up...so the car rental people wouldn't know we were transporting animals in their vehicle. But screw that – the rental lobby was full of families with kids (uncaged, and much more likely to make messes). At any rate the rental person didn't pay any attention to L lurking in the background, gave me the key and told us to go find the car at the back of the garage.
Car ride from airport to Hope was extended by an hour or more, due to a hold-up on the highway. I pulled off at a exit and found a small mall where I had a short doze in the car and then got a latte with an extra shot. By then the traffic was moving. We had one more quick stop to get a couple necessities and then to our new home.
Cats were beginning to stir by then. They and we did a bit of exploring of our new quarters, but then everybody settled down and did some serious mid-day sleeping.